Tuesday, December 4, 2007

That Which we Call a Rose

Wherefore art thou Muhammad?

From the International Herald http://www.iht.com/articles/2007/12/04/europe/london.php: "The teddy bear ordeal began in September when Gibbons, who taught at one of the most exclusive private schools in Khartoum, started a project on animals and asked her class to suggest a name for a teddy bear. The class voted resoundingly for Muhammad.
Gibbons told her pupils to take the teddy bear home, photograph it and write a diary entry about it. Most of her students were Muslim and the children of wealthy Sudanese families.

The incident became an international cause célèbre, with Britons - both Muslim and non-Muslim - expressing outrage at Gibbons's arrest and thousands of protesters in Sudan calling for her to be put to death."

Silly Allah,imbuing kids and women with creativity and thoughtfulness! What was Allah doing during that part of his creation of "man"--smoking a doobie? If he was so all-seeing and powerful, wouldn't he eliminate the urge of kids to want to edify the Prophet Muhammad in a well-loved child's toy? It seems odd that he would want a woman put to death for the mistakes of the children of his followers (it would stand to reason though when one thinks in circles like religious zealots).
How about "towel-headed" bear? That is much more descriptive and it blissfully omits the cursed word "Muhammad" (is it a coincidence that Muhammad ends in "MAD"? I think not)!

How ironic that the American man who the Teddy bear is named after, President Teddy Roosevelt had this to say during his era: "The world would have halted had it not been for the Teutonic conquests in alien lands; but the victories of Moslem over Christian have always proved a curse in the end. Nothing but sheer evil has come from the victories of Turk and Tartar".

But as Americans can we say that we have separated church from state (education)? Let me share an anecdote with you: I was explaining evolution to some high school students one day. I was met with an extremely distraught and tearful young woman who lamented that her Christian belief had been affronted by the PBS show on evolution. The principle then coached me to tell the girl that "creationism" was a valid alternative to the theory of evolution? Years and years and volumes of scientific evidence is comparable to creationism? OK!?

There are places in the U.S. where Mormon churches are erected at the same time as schools and in conspicuous proximity to our learning institutions (I use the term loosely). Mormon students are allowed to take a "period" of their day to pursue the teachings of Latter Day Saints at the adjoining church. What about the thousands of other religions? Can you imagine how unproductive it would be if all the Christian, Muslim, Catholic, Buddhist, Pagan,Protestants,Hindus,Sikhs,Jews,agnostics, and atheists all built huge edifices in the name of their respective gods and commenced to get their learn on? Where would the education begin? Is it because the Mormon religion has a nice, white, shiny cover of mostly aryan race and polite manners? Help me jog my memory---hasn't something similar like this happened in the past with dire results?

Be afraid my friends (especially of the female persuasion--females are rarely on the winning end of such matters)! Be very afraid!

1 comment:

Eagle Eye said...

It is odd how Americans bend over backwards to kowtow to extreme foreign fundamentalists, yet feel that something as innocuous as a "tree" with ornaments is not diverse enough? I say let every denomination hang their own unique ornament on the tree. Traditions are just that--traditions that may or may not connote a specific religion. We don't ask other countries to change their harmless customs (death threats over a name is another matter).
When I was a substitute, I thought it would be fun to bring some Halloween-themed coloring pages to school. A girl told me she couldn't color the picture of a spider because she wasn't allowed to acknowledge or participate in Halloween. A spider? Whoa! Things would've gone crazy if she colored a spider!? She would probably be working the pole today if she had succumbed to my evil request. My next plan was to have them paint a huge pentagram on the floor, slaughter a goat, and then dance around in jubilee!?